Health | To ask the Minister for Health the extent to which it is expected to make serious inroads on hospital waiting lists throughout the country by whatever means
To ask the Minister for Health the extent to which it is expected to make serious inroads on hospital waiting lists throughout the country by whatever means; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
The number of people on acute scheduled care waiting lists was already too high before the pandemic and now, following months of disruption to services, there are over 730,000 waiting for scheduled care in Ireland. In February of this year, I launched the 2022 Waiting List Action Plan, following extensive consultation between my Department, the HSE and the National Treatment Purchase Fund. With this Plan, €350 million has been allocated to the HSE and NTPF to provide additional public and private activity to further stabilise and reduce scheduled care waiting lists and times and bring forward much needed longer-term reform.
It is projected that 1.5 million people will be added to waiting lists this year. The Plan details how we intend to ensure that an even higher number, 1.7 million, are treated and removed from waiting lists. Therefore, if this Plan is fully delivered, it will reduce waiting lists by 18 percent this year which will bring the number of people waiting to 588,000, the lowest number in five years.
The Plan will also progress work towards the achievement of intermediate waiting time targets this year, as set out in the National Service Plan (of 18 months for OPD; 12 months for IPDC; and 12 months for GI scopes).
Additionally, there is a particular focus on 15 high-volume inpatient day case procedures, so that every person waiting for over 6 months who is clinically ready will receive an offer of treatment. These procedures include cataracts, hip and knee replacements, and angiograms. Implementation of the Plan is well underway, with progress being monitored by a Task Force co-chaired by the Secretary General of my Department and the CEO of the HSE
Leave a Reply